We did our second and final ocean dive for our SCUBA certification on Wednesday. It was a two tank dive, with our first dive at a location called The Rock, and our second dive at the River Taw again. Also on the boat with us was another student from Cory's class who is getting certified (Aden), an employee from the cruise ship that was docked for the day, and a couple vacationing from Utah. It was a beautiful day, and the water was calm!
There are a few different ways to get into the water when diving. The first one we learned was the giant stride, where you step from the low edge of the boat out into the water. But our favorite is the back roll. This is where you sit on the edge of the boat and roll backwards into the water.
Our first dive at The Rock was cool because we went deeper than we've gone in the past. At one point, we were down to 60 feet!
Down at the bottom, looking up towards the boat
Right away, Vajai spotted a large crab under a rock.
He gently pulled him out and brought him up for us to see. He put his dive knife in the crab's claw to try to get him to pinch it
Then we took turns holding him for pictures. I have to admit, I was a little scared...
We saw more sea life as well, including lobster and some big fish!
There were tons of fish everywhere!
We got a little goofy and posed a bit while we swam around
Cory likes hanging out upside down now
But it wasn't all fun and games, we had to do a few more skills. This time, we had to completely remove our masks, then put them back on and clear out the water.
I also took a few more pictures of the tube sponges, because they are just so cool!
Vajai doing more air rings
Aden and Cory heading back up to the boat
Hanging out on the line, doing our 3 minute safety stop
After getting back up to the boat, it was off to our second dive spot, the River Taw. First, we had to do some navigation skills on the surface. Here is the bow of the boat below, from up at the surface
Here is Aden, higher up on the line, with Cory and Vajai below her, getting ready to practice swimming to the surface on your last breath of air
While it was Aden's turn, Cory and I waited at the bottom, and found a big starfish
After we were done with the work, we got to swim around the wreck again. I got a picture of Cory swimming in front of the bow, but since it was so murky, you can just make out the shadow of the ship behind him. I still thought it was a cool picture
Once again, the fish swarmed around us looking for food
And of course, we fed them again
This time, Vajai took us over to see the sunken van and the sunken bulldozer. The van was cool, and it was filled with lots of tiny fish
The bulldozer was falling apart a bit more, and a little harder to recognize
This parrot fish is one of my favorites, it has such pretty colors!
Heading back towards the wreck, we saw a huge barracuda!
Vajai was able to get close, and very slowly, it swam right in front of his face. It didn't seem scared of us at all!
We swam around the wreck once more before it was time to head back up
While we were stopped at 15 feet doing our safety stop, Vajai got Cory to try blowing air rings. (Vajai has a little magnetic, waterproof slate that he can write on). He did well for his first try!
Once we got back up to the surface, we raced back to the marina so the guy from the cruise ship could get back before the ship left!
Now, all we have to do is take the written test, and we will officially be certified!